ECON 300 (384)

Welcome to Mathematical Economics (currently ECON 300 but eventually ECON 384). Below you will find links to course reading materials, interesting links, and other information I’ve pulled together from the Internet. If you have anything you think would be worth adding, please let me know.

You can find me in my office on: Tuesday 2:30pm-5:00pm and Thursday 2:30pm-5:00pm; and online Wednesday between 2pm-3pm. Office hours are occasionally rescheduled due to conflicts. Please try to make an appointment before coming by.

Link to course on Canvas


Pemberton & Rau Exercise Solutions
Pemberton & Rau Problem Solutions

Section 1: Linear equations: slope/intercept, solving systems of equations, inequalities

Lecture 1: Mathematica (nb)

Class 1 Notes
Class 2 Notes

Section 2: Sets and functions, quadratics and logs, series.

Lecture 2A: Mathematica (nb)
Lecture 2B: Mathematica (nb)

Section 3: Differentiation: first, second, product, quotient rules.

Lecture 3a: Mathematica (nb)
Lecture 3b: Mathematica (nb)

Section 4: Optimization, exponential and log functions.

Lecture 4: Mathematica (nb)

Section 5: Matrix algebra

Lecture 5: Mathematica (nb)
Lecture 5: Powerpoint
Lecture 5b: Mathematica (nb)
Lecture 5b: Powerpoint

Part 6: Functions of several variables, differentiation, chain rule, partial derivatives, Hessians, constrained optimization

Lecture X: Mathematica (nb)

Part 7: Basic integration and applications to statistics

Lecture X: Mathematica (nb)

Software Downloads


Mathematica is software that is used for a wide variety of mathematical and economic purposes including running simulations, solving linear algebra problems, performing regression analysis, building models, to name only a few. Mathematica is incredibly powerful, and will help you to check through taking derivations, solving integrals, examining non-linear problems, and graphically displaying your work. We will only begin to touch on what Mathematica can do.

You can download Mathematica for free at

Required Readings

Mathematica Solutions to Economics Site

Hands on Start to Mathematica

R (just “R“)

is free software used for statistical computing and graphics. While SAS is very powerful software for running prepackaged econometric estimations, can perform many advanced features that you cannot easily do in SAS. To be fair, SAS is probably able to do almost everything we are going to do with R, but as an experienced user of SAS I can tell you that it can be like trying to hammer a nail with a screwdriver to do the same work in SAS that you can do in R. We are only going to scratch the surface of what you can do with R, but I hope that you are able to apply what you learn here beyond this course. R is open-source software, meaning it is free for you to use for almost any purpose (except redistribution in many cases) and on any platform (Mac, PC, Linux). For those considering graduate work in economics or another mathematically inclined field, you will be able to use R without the restriction of having to pay for it. SAS is very expensive, and is not provided by many employers. The primary benefit of R is the community of open-source programmers who help expand the software. We will use R to experiment with algorithms, matrix manipulation, and Monte Carlo simulation.

Required Readings

An Introduction to R.